* NY Times…
As President Donald Trump prepares to leave office with his party in disarray, Republican leaders including Sen. Mitch McConnell are maneuvering to thwart his grip on the GOP in future elections, while forces aligned with Trump are looking to punish Republican lawmakers and governors who have broken with him. […]
Republicans on both sides of the conflict are acknowledging openly that they are headed for a showdown.
“Hell yes, we are,” said Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, one of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump.
Kinzinger was equally blunt when asked how he and other anti-Trump Republicans could dilute the president’s clout in primaries.
“We beat him,” he said.
* Meanwhile, in Illinois, here’s Democratic US Rep. Sean Casten…
ince the results of the elections in November were certified, multiple members of the Illinois Republican Party have continued to question the outcomes without valid justification. Local Republican officials have been demanding a full recount of votes in DuPage County, mobilizing rallies and using incendiary rhetoric that directly echoes language used by the Proud Boys and other domestic terror groups who attacked the United States Capitol last week.
In one of several mass communications calling for a recount on the basis of factually inaccurate claims, the DuPage County Republican Party Chairman falsely claimed the DuPage County Clerk is breaking the law and that she needs to be held “accountable.” While these individuals are now attempting to distance themselves from the violence on January 6th, we cannot ignore their contributions to the disinformation campaign that led to it. The language being used by those seeking to overturn a free and fair election in DuPage County is virtually identical to the language being used by those groups who are planning those attacks—from the “stop the steal” battle cry that’s since been removed from Facebook for its threat to public safety to suggesting that supporters “fight” election results extrajudicially. Any political party who fails to curtail this language must, if only out of an abundance of caution, be assumed to be supporting these insurrectionists.
Words matter, and the events of the last week have made it abundantly clear what these particular words can incite. U.S. intelligence agencies have informed us that there are multiple terror groups seeking to mobilize attacks on the U.S. Government and all fifty state capitals in or around January 20th; Our entire national security, intelligence and civil protection apparatus, including federal, state, and local agencies are focused on identifying and stopping these actors.
To that end, I call on the leadership of the Illinois Republican party, and upon public officials at all levels of state and local government, to immediately and publicly disavow and condemn these actions, affirm the certified results of the November election, and use their position of leadership to make it abundantly clear that while the terrorists who attacked the Capitol last week may have had a political agenda, they do not have the support of the party of Lincoln.
I asked for a comment from the ILGOP last week and heard nothing back. The state Republican Party regularly demands reporters ask questions of Gov. Pritzker, so turnabout, etc.
* This may be wishful thinking…
Trump will no longer be a handicap to Republicans in the Chicago suburbs and in places like Champaign County, where he could manage no more than 37 percent of the vote and where the once-dominant GOP lost six countywide offices since Trump became president. Democrats also have gained a pair of seats in both the Illinois House and Senate since 2016.
Trump’s loss, combined with the demise of Michael J. Madigan, the longtime Speaker of the House who has bedeviled Republicans in the Legislature for 50 years, makes January 2021 one of the best months for the Illinois GOP in years.
The political pendulum may finally be moving in favor of Republicans in the Land of Lincoln.
The worst of it may be over for the party for now, but the suburbs have been trending more Democratic since the 1990s just as Downstate has been trending more Republican. Neither trend is likely to stop.
* Greg Hinz…
What I’m saying is that Illinois Republicans have opportunity, even now. Democrats are quite capable of soiling their own nest. But to reach millions of voters in the middle, the GOP somehow has to cleanse a brand that now is horridly tarnished. Please, give me real choice on Election Day.
Easier said than done. Party leaders can only do so much. If the GOP base doesn’t settle down, those primaries are gonna be something to behold.